The Discovery of the Source of the Nile
John Hanning Speke

Part 9 out of 11

I therefore argued that Kamrasi's treatment of us was easily
accounted for: he heard of us coming by two routes from an
enemy's country, and was naturally suspicious of us; that had now
been changed by our withdrawing, and he invited us to him.
Without doubt, his commander-in-chief was never very far away,
and followed on our heels. Such precaution was only natural and
reasonable on Kamrasi's part, and what had been done need not
alarm any one. "If you do your duty properly, you will take us at
once into Unyoro, make your charge over to these men, and return
or not as you like; for in doing so you will have fulfilled both
Mtesa's, and Kamrasi's orders at once." "Very good," says Budja,
"let it be so; for there is great wisdom in your words: but I
must first send to my king, for the Waganda villagers have struck
two of your men with weapons" (this had happened just before my
arrival here), "and this is a most heinous offence in Uganda,
which cannot be overlooked. Had it been done with a common
stick, it could have been overlooked; but the use of weapons is
an offence, and both parties must go before the king." This, of
course, was objected to on the plea that it was my own affair. I
was king of the Wanguana, and might choose to dispense with the
attendance. The matter was compromised, however, on the
condition that Budja should march across the border to-morrow,
and wait for the return of these men and for further orders on
the Unyoro side.

The bait took. Budja lost sight of the necessity there was for
his going to Gani to bring back a gun, ammunition, and some
medicine-- that is to say, brandy--for his king; and sent his men
off with mine to tell Mtesa all our adventures--our double
repulse, the intention to wait on the Unyoro side for further
orders, and the account of some Waganda having wounded my men. I
added my excuses for Kamrasi, and laid a complaint against
Mtesa's officers for having defrauded us out of ten cows, five
goats, six butter, and sixty mbugu. It was not that we required
these things, but I knew that the king had ordered them to be
given to us, and I thought it right we should show that his
officers, if they professed to obey his orders, had peculated.
After these men had started, some friends of the villager who had
been apprehended on the charge of assailing my men, came and
offered Budja five cows to overlook the charge; and Budja, though
he could not overlook it when I pleaded for the man, asked me to
recall my men. Discovering that the culprit was a queen's man,
and that the affair would cause bad blood at court should the
king order the man's life to be taken, I tried to do so, but
things had gone too far.

Again the expedition marched on in the right direction. We
reached the last village on the Uganda frontier, and there spent
the night. Here Grant shot a nsunnu buck. The Wanguana mutinied
for ammunition, and would not lift a load until they got it,
saying, "Unyoro is a dangerous country," though they had been
there before without any more than they now had in pouch. The
fact was, my men, in consequence of the late issues on the river,
happened to have more than Grant's men, and every man must have
alike. The ringleader, unfortunately for himself, had lately
fired at a dead lion, to astonish the Unyoro, and his chum had
fired a salute, which was contrary to orders; for ammunition was
at a low ebb, and I had done everything in my power to nurse it.
Therefore, as a warning to the others, the guns of these two were
confiscated, and a caution given that any gun in future let off,
either by design or accident, would be taken.

To-day I felt very thankful to get across the much-vexed
boundary-line, and enter Unyoro, guided by Kamrasi's deputation
of officers, and so shake off the apprehensions which had teased
us for so many days. This first march was a picture of all the
country to its capital: an interminable forest of small trees,
bush, and tall grass, with scanty villages, low huts, and dirty-
looking people clad in skins; the plantain, sweet potato,
sesamum, and ulezi (millet) forming the chief edibles, besides
goats and fowls; whilst the cows, which are reported to be
numerous, being kept, as everywhere else where pasture-lands are
good, by the wandering, unsociable Wahuma are seldom seen. No
hills, except a few scattered cones, disturb the level surface of
the land, and no pretty views ever cheer the eye. Uganda is now
entirely left behind; we shall not see its like again; for the
further one leaves the equator, and the rain-attracting
influences of the Mountains of the Moon, vegetation decreases
proportionately with the distance.

Fortunately the frontier-village could not feed so large a party
as ours, and therefore we were compelled to move farther on, to
our great delight, through the same style of forest acacia,
cactus, and tall grass, to Kidgwiga's gardens, where we no sooner
arrived than Mtesa's messenger-page, with a party of fifty
Waganda, dropped in, in the most unexpected manner, to inquire
after "his royal master's friend, Bana." The king had heard of
the fight upon the river, and thought the Wanguana must be very
good shots. He still trusted we would not forget the gun and
ammunition, but, above all, the load of stimulants, for he
desired that above all things on earth. This was the fourth
message to remind us of these important matters which we had
received since leaving his gracious presence, and each time
brought by the same page. While the purpose of the boy's coming
with so many men was not distinctly known, the whole village and
camp were in a state of great agitation, Budja fearing lest the
king had some fault to find with his work, and the Wanyoro
deeming it a menace of war, whilst I was afraid they might take
fright and stop our progress.

But all went well in the end; Massey's log, which I have
mentioned as a present I intended for Mtesa, was packed up, and
the page departed with it. Some of Rumanika's men, who came into
Unyoro with Baraka, with four of K'yengo's, were sent to call us
by Kamrasi. Through Rumanika's men it transpired that he had
stood security for our actions, else, with the many evil reports
of our being cannibals and such-like, which had preceded our
coming here, we never should have gained admittance to the
country. The Wanyoro, who are as squalid-looking as the
Wanyamuezi, and almost as badly dressed, now came about us to
hawk ivory ornaments, brass and copper twisted wristlets,
tobacco, and salt, which they exchanged for cowries, with which
they purchase cows from the Waganda. As in Uganda, all the
villagers forsook their huts as soon as they heard the Wageni
(guests) were coming; and no one paid the least attention to the
traveller, save the few head-men attached to the escort, or some
professional traders.

25th to 28th.--I had no sooner ordered the march than Vittagura
counter-ordered it, and held a levee to ascertain, as he said, if
the Waganda were to go back; for though Kamrasi wished to see us,
he did not want the Waganda. It was Kamrasi's orders that Budja
should tell this to his "child the Mkavia," meaning Mtesa; for
when the Waganda came the first time to see him, three of his
family died; and when they came the second time, three more died;
and as this rate of mortality was quite unusual in his family
circle, he could only attribute it to foul magic. The presence
of people who brought such results was of course by no means
desirable. This neat message elicited with a declaration of the
necessity of Budja's going to Gani with us, and a response from
the commander-in-chief, probably to terrify the Waganda, that
although Gani was only nine days' journey distant from Kamrasi's
palace, the Gani people were such barbarians, they would call a
straight-haired man a magician, and any person who tied his mbugu
in a knot upon his shoulder, or had a full set of teeth as the
Waganda have, would be surely killed by them. Finally, we must
wait two days, to see if Kamrasi would see us or not. Such was
Unyoro diplomacy.

An announcement of a different kind immediately followed. The
king had heard that I gave a cow to Vittagura and Kidgwiga when
they first came to me in Uganda, and wished the Wanyamuezi to
ascertain if this was true. Of course, I said they were my
guests in Uganda, and if they had been wise they would have eaten
their cow on the spot; what was that to Kamrasi? It was a pity
he did not treat us as well who have come into his country at his
own invitation, instead of keeping us starving in this gloomy
wilderness, without a drop of pombe to cheer the day;--why could
not he let us go on? He wanted first to hear if the big Mzungu,
meaning myself, had really come yet. All fudge!

Three days were spent in simply waiting for return messages on
both sides, and more might have been lost in the same way, only
we amused Vittagura and gave him confidence by showing our
pictures, looking-glass, scissors, knives, etc., when he promised
a march in the morning, leaving a man behind to bring on the
Wanguana sent to Mtesa's, it being the only alternative which
would please Budja; for he said there was no security for life in
Unyoro, where every Mkungu calls himself the biggest man, and no
true hospitality is to be found.

The next two days took us through Chagamoyo to Kiratosi, by the
aid of the compass; for the route Kamrasi's men took differed
from the one which Budja knew, and he declared the Wanyoro were
leading us into a trap, and would not be convinced we were going
on all right till I pulled out the compass and confirmed the
Wanyoro. We were anything but welcomed at Kiratosi, the people
asking by what bad luck we had come there to eat up their crops;
but in a little while they flocked to our doors and admired our
traps, remarking that they believed each iron box contained a
couple of white dwarfs, which we carry on our shoulders, sitting
straddle-legs, back to back, and they fly off to eat people
whenever they get the order. One of these visitors happened to
be the sister of one of my men, named Baruti, who no sooner
recognised her brother, than, without saying a word, she clasped
her head with her hands, and ran off, crying, to tell her husband
what she had seen. A spy of Kamrasi dropped the report that the
Wanguana were returning from Mtesa's, and hurried on to tell the

31st.--Some Waganda hurrying in, confirmed the report of last
night, and said the Wanguana, footsore, had been left at the
Uganda frontier, expecting us to return, as Mtesa, at the same
time that he approved highly of my having sent men back to inform
him of Kamrasi's conduct, begged we would instantly return, even
if found within one march of Kamrasi's, for he had much of
importance to tell his friend Bana. The message continued to
this effect: I need be under no apprehensions about the road to
the coast, for he would give me as many men as I liked; and,
fearing I might be short of powder, he had sent some with the
Wanguana. Both Wanguana were by the king given women for their
services, and an old tin cartridge-box represented Mtesa's card,
it being an article of European manufacture, which, if found in
the possession of any Mganda, would be certain death to him.
Finally, all the houses and plantains where my men were wounded
had been confiscated.

When this message was fully delivered, Budja said we must return
without a day's delay. I, on the contrary, called up Kidgwiga. I
did not like my men having been kept prisoners in Uganda, and
pronounced in public that I would not return. It would be an
insult to Kamrasi my doing so, for I was now in his "house" at
his own invitation. I wished Bombay would go with him (Kidgwiga)
at once to his king, to say I had hoped, when I sent Budja with
Mabruki, in the first instance, conveying a friendly present from
Mtesa, which was done at my instigation, and I found Kamrasi
acknowledged it by a return-present, that there would be no more
fighting between them. I said I had left England to visit these
countries for the purpose of opening up a trade, and I had no
orders to fight my way except with the force of friendship. That
Rumanika had accepted my views Kamrasi must be fully aware by
Baraka's having visited him; and that Mtesa did the same must
also be evident, else he would never have ordered his men to
accompany me to Gani; and I now fondly trusted that these Waganda
would be allowed to go with me, when, by the influence of trade,
all animosity would cease, and friendly relations be restored
between the two countries.

This speech was hardly pronounced when Kajunju, a fine athletic
man, dropped suddenly in, nodded a friendly recognition to Budja,
and wished to know what the Waganda meant by taking us back, for
the king had heard of their intention last night; and when told
by Budja his story, and by Kidgwiga mine, he vanished like a
shadow. Budja, now turning to me, said, "If you won't go back, I
shall; for the orders of Mtesa must always be obeyed, else lives
will be lost; and I shall tell him that you, since leaving his
country, and getting your road, have quite forgotten him." "If
you give such a message as that," I said, "you will tell a
falsehood. Mtesa has no right to order me out of another man's
house, to be an enemy with one whose friendship I desire. I am
not only in honour bound to speak with Kamrasi, but I am also
bound to carry out the orders of my country just as much as you
are yours; moreover, I have invited Petherick to come to
Kamrasi's by a letter from Karague, and it would be ill-becoming
in me to desert him in the hands of an enemy, as he would then
certainly find Kamrasi to be if I went back now." Budja then
tried the coaxing dodge, saying, "There is much reason in your
words, but I am sorry you do not listen to the king, for he loves
you as a brother. Did you not go about like two brothers--
walking, talking, shooting, and even eating together? It was the
remark of all the Waganda, and the king will be so vexed when he
finds you have thrown him over. I did not tell you before, but
the king says, 'How can I answer Rumanika if Kamrasi injures
Bana? Had I known Kamrasi was such a savage, I would not have let
Bana go there; and I should now have sent a forge to take him
away, only that some accident might arise from it by Kamrasi's
taking fright; the road even to Gani shall be got by force if
necessary.'" Then, finding me still persistent, Budja turned
again and threatened us with the king's power, saying, "If you
choose to disobey, we will see whether you ever get the road to
Gani or not; for Kamrasi is at war on all sides with his
brothers, and Mtesa will ally himself with them at any moment
that he wishes, and where will you be then?"

Saying this, Budja walked off, muttering that our being here
would much embarrass Mtesa's actions; whilst my Wanguana, who had
been attentively listening, like timid hares, made up their minds
to leave me, and tried, through Bombay, to obtain a final
interview with me, saying they knew Mtesa's power, and
disobedience to him would only end in taking away all chance of
escape. In reply, I said I would not listen to them, as I had
seen enough of them to know it was no use speaking to a pack of
unreasonable cowards, having tried it so often before; but I sent
a message requesting them, if they did desert me at last, to
leave my guns; and, further, added an intimation that, as soon as
they reached the coast, they would be put into prison for three
years. The scoundrels insolently said "tuende setu" (let's be
off), rushed to the Waganda drums, and beat the march.

1st.--Early in the morning, as Budja drummed the home march, I
called him up, gave him a glass rain-gauge as a letter for Mtesa,
and instructed him to say I would send a man to Mtesa as soon as
I had seen Kamrasi about opening the road; that I trusted he
would take all the guns from the deserters and keep them for me,
but the men themselves I wished transported to an island on the
N'yanza, for I could never allow such scoundrels again to enter
my camp. It was the effect of desertions like these that
prevented any white men visiting these countries. This said, the
Waganda all left us, taking with them twenty-eight Wanguana,
armed with twenty-two carbines. Amongst them was the wretched
governess, Manamaka, who had always thought me a wonderful
magician, because I possessed, in her belief, an extraordinary
power in inclining all the black kings' hearts to me, and induced
them to give the roads no one before of my colour had ever
attempted to use.

With a following reduced to twenty men, armed with fourteen
carbines, I now wished to start for Kamrasi's, but had not even
sufficient force to lift the loads. A little while elapsed, and
a party of fifty Wanyoro rushed wildly into camp, with their
spears uplifted, and looked for the Waganda, but found them gone.
The athletic Kajunju, it transpired, had returned to Kamrasi's,
told him our story, and received orders to snatch us away from
the Waganda by force, for the great Mkamma, or king, was most
anxious to see his white visitors; such men had never entered
Unyoro before, and neither his father nor his father's fathers
had ever been treated with such a visitation; therefore he had
sent on these fifty men to fall by surprise on the Waganda, and
secure us. But again, in a little while, about 10 a.m., Kajunju,
in the same wild manner, at the head of 150 warriors, with the
soldier's badge--a piece of mbugu or plantain-leaf tied round
their heads, and a leather sheath on their spear-heads, tufted
with cow's-tail--rushed in exultingly, having found, to their
delight, that there was no one left to fight with, and that they
had gained an easy victory. They were certainly a wild set of
ragamuffins--as different as possible from the smart, well-
dressed, quick-of-speech Waganda as could be, and anything but
prepossessing to our eyes. However, they had done their work,
and I offered them a cow, wishing to have it shot before them;
but the chief men, probably wishing the whole animal to
themselves, took it alive, saying the men were all the king's
servants, and therefore could not touch a morsel.

Kamrasi expected us to advance next day, when some men would go
on ahead to announce our arrival, and bring a letter which was
brought with beads by Gani before Baraka's arrival here. It was
shown to Baraka in the hope that we would come by the Karague
route, but not to Mabruki, because he came from Uganda. Kidgwiga
informed us that Kamrasi never retaliated on Mtesa when he lifted
Unyoro cows, though the Waganda keep their cattle on the border--
which simply meant that he had not the power of doing so. The
twenty remaining Wanguana, conversing over the sudden scheme of
the deserters, proposed, on one side, sending for them, as, had
they seen the Wanyoro arrive, they would have changed their
minds; but the other side said, "What! those brutes who said we
should all die here if we stayed, and yet dared not face the
danger with us, should we now give them a helping hand? Never!
We told them we would share our fate with Bana, and share it we
will, for God rules everything: every man must die when his time

We marched for the first time without music, as the drum is never
allowed to be beaten in Unyoro except when the necessities of war
demand it, or for a dance. Wanyamuezi and Wanyoro, in addition
to our own twenty men, carried the luggage, though no one carried
more than the smallest article he could find. It was a pattern
Unyoro march, of only two hours' duration. On arrival at the end
we heard that elephants had been seen close by. Grant and I then
prepared our guns, and found a herd of about a hundred feeding on
a plain of long grass, dotted here and there by small mounds
crowned with shrub. The animals appeared to be all females, much
smaller than the Indian breed; yet though ten were fired at, none
were killed, and only one made an attempt to charge. I was with
the little twin Manua at the time, when, stealing along under
cover of the high grass, I got close to the batch and fired at
the larges, which sent her round roaring. The whole of them
then, greatly alarmed, packed together and began sniffing the air
with their uplifted trunks, till, ascertaining by the smell of
the powder that their enemy was in front of them, they rolled up
their trunks and came close to the spot where I was lying under a
mound. My scent then striking across them, they pulled up short,
lifted their heads high, and looked down sideways on us. This
was a bad job. I could not get a proper front shot at the boss
of any of them, and if I had waited an instant we should both
have been picked up or trodden to death; so I let fly at their
temples, and instead of killing, sent the whole of them rushing
away at a much faster pace than they came. After this I gave up,
because I never could separate the ones I had wounded from the
rest, and thought it cruel to go on damaging more. Thinking over
it afterwards, I came to the conclusion I ought to have put in
more powder; for I had, owing to their inferior size to the
Indian ones, rather despised them, and fired at them with the
same charge and in the same manner as I always did at rhinoceros.
Though puzzled at the strange sound of the rifle, the elephants
seldom ran far, packed in herd, and began to graze again. Frij,
who was always ready at spinning a yarn, told us with much
gravity that two of my men, Uledi and Wadi Hamadi, deserters,
were possessed of devils (Phepo) at Zanzibar. Uledi, not wishing
to be plagued by his Satanic majesty's angels on the march,
sacrificed a cow and fed the poor, according to the great Phepo's
orders, and had been exempted from it; but Wadi Hamadi, who
preferred taking his chance, had been visited several times: once
at Usui, when he was told the journey would be prosperous, only
the devil wanted one man's life, and one man would fall sick;
which proved true, for Hassani was murdered, and Grant fell sick
in Karague. The second time Wadi Hamadi saw the devil in
Karague, and was told one man's life would be required in Uganda,
and such also was the case by Kari's murder; and a third time, in
Unyoro, he was possessed, when it was said that the journey would
be prosperous but protracted.

3d.--Though we stormed every day at being so shamefully neglected
and kept in the jungles, we could not get on, nor find out the
truth of our position. I asked if Kamrasi was afraid of us, and
looking into his magic horn; and was answered, "No; he is very
anxious to see you, or he would not have sent six of his highest
officers to look after you, and prevent the unruly peasantry from
molesting you." "Then by whose orders are we kept here?" "By
Kamrasi's." "Why does Kamrasi keep us here?" "He thinks you are
not so near, and men have gone to tell him." "How did we come
here from the last ground?" "By Kamrasi's orders; for nothing
can be done excepting by his orders." "Then he must know we are
here?" "He may not have seen the men we sent to him; for unless
he shows in public no one can see him." The whole affair gave us
such an opinion of Kamrasi as induced us to think it would have
served him right had we joined Mtesa and given him a thrashing.
This, I said, was put in our power by an alliance with his
refractory brothers; but Kidgwiga only laughed and said,
"Nonsense! Kamrasi is the chief of all the countries round here--
Usoga, Kidi, Chopi, Gani, Ulega, everywhere; he has only to hold
up his hand and thousands would come to his assistance."
Kwibeya, the officer of the place, presented us with five fowls
on the part of the king, and some baskets of potatoes.

4th.--We halted again, it was said, in order that Kwibeya might
give us all the king had desired him to present. I sent Bombay
off with a message to Kamrasi explaining everything, and begging
for an early interview, as I had much of importance to
communicate, and wished, of all things, to see the letter he had
from Gani, as it must have come from our dear friends at home.
Seven goats, flour, and plantains, were now brought to us; and as
Kidgwiga begged for the flour without success, he flew into a fit
of high indignation because these things were given and received
without his having first been consulted. He was the big man and
appointed go-between, and no one could dispute it. This was
rather startling news to us, for Vittagura said he was commander-
in-chief; Kajunju thought himself biggest, so did Kwibeya, and
even Dr K'yengo's men justified Budja's speech.

5th and 6th.--Still another halt, with all sorts of excuses.
Frij, it appeared, dreamt last night that the king of Uganda came
to fight us for not complying with his orders, and that all my
men ran away except Uledi and himself. This, according to the
interpretation of the coast, would turn out the reverse,
otherwise his head must be wrong, and, according to local
science, should be set right again by actual cautery of the
temples; and as Grant dreamt a letter came from Gani which I
opened and ran away with, he thought it would turn out no letter
at all, and therefore Kamrasi had been humbugging us. We heard
that Bombay had shot a cow before Kamrasi and would not be
allowed to return until he had eaten it.

At last we made a move, but only of two hours' duration, through
the usual forest, in which elephants walked about as if it were
their park. We hoped at starting to reach the palace, but found
we must stop here until the king should send for us. We were
informed that doubtless he was looking into his Uganga, or magic
horn, to discover what he had to expect from us; and he seemed as
yet to have found no ground for being afraid of us. Moreover, it
is his custom to keep visitors waiting on him in this way, for is
he not the king of kings, the king of Kittara, which includes all
the countries surrounding Unyoro?

Chapter XVII


Invitation to the Palace at last--Journey to it--Bombay's Visit
to King Kamrasi--Our Reputation as Cannibals--Reception at Court-
- Acting the Physician again--Royal Mendicancy.

We halted again, but in the evening one of Dr K'yengo's men came
to invite us to the palace. He explained that Kamrasi was in a
great rage because we only received seven goats instead of
thirty, the number he had ordered Kwibeya to give us, besides
pombe and plantains without limitation. I complained that Bombay
had been shown more respect than myself, obtaining an immediate
admittance to the king's presence. To this he gave two ready
answers--that every distinction shown my subordinate was a
distinction to myself, and that we must not expect court
etiquette from savages.

9th.--We set off for the palace. This last march differed but
little from the others. Putting Dr K'yengo's men in front, and
going on despite all entreaties to stop, we passed the last bit
of jungle, sighted the Kidi hills, and, in a sea of swampy grass,
at last we stood in front of and overlooked the great king's
palace, situated N. lat. 1 37' 43", and E. long. 32 19' 49", on
a low tongue of land between the Kafu and Nile rivers. It was a
dumpy, large hut, surrounded by a host of smaller ones, and the
worst royal residence we had seen since leaving Uzinza. Here
Kajunju, coming from behind, overtook us, and breathless with
running, in the most excited manner, abused Dr K'yengo's men for
leading us on, and ordered us to stop until he saw the king, and
ascertained the place his majesty wished us to reside in.
Recollecting Mtesa's words that Kamrasi placed his guest on the
N'yanza, I declined going to any place but the palace, which I
maintained was my right, and waited for the issue, when Kajunju
returned with pombe, and showed us to a small, dirty set of huts
beyond the Kafu river--the trunk of the Mwerango and N'yanza
branches which we crossed in Uganda-- and trusted this would do
for the present, as better quarters in the palace would be looked
for on the morrow. This was a bad beginning, and caused a few of
the usual anathemas in which our countrymen give vent to their

Two loads of flowers, neatly packed in long strips of rushpith,
were sent for us "to consume at once," as more would be given on
the morrow. To keep us amused, Kidgwiga informed us that Kamrasi
and Mtesa--in fact, all the Wahuma--came originally from a stock
of the same tribe dwelling beyond Kidi. All bury their dead in
the same way, under ground; but the kings are toasted first for
months till they are like sun-dried meat, when the lower jaw is
cut out and preserved, covered with beads. The royal tombs are
put under the charge of special officers, who occupy huts erected
over them. The umbilical cords are preserved from birth, and, at
death, those of men are placed within the door-frame, whilst
those of women are buried without--this last act corresponding,
according to Bombay, with the custom of the Wahiyow. On the
death of any of the great officers of state, the finger-bones and
hair are also preserved; or if they have died shaven, as
sometimes occurs, a bit of their mbugu dress will be preserved in
place of the hair. Their families guard their tombs.

The story we heard at Karague, about dogs with horns in Unyoro,
was confirmed by Kidgwiga, who positively assured us that he once
saw one in the possession of an official person, but it died. The
horn then was stuffed with magic powder, and, whenever an army
was ordered for war, it was placed on the war-track for the
soldiers to step over, in the same way as a child is sacrificed
to insure victory in Unyomuezi. Of the Karague story, according
to which all the Kidi people sleep in trees, Kidgwiga gave me a
modified version. He said the bachelors alone do son, whilst the
married folk dwell in houses. As most of these stories have some
foundation in fact, we presumed that the people of Kidi sometimes
mount a tree to sleep at night when travelling through their
forests, where lions are plentiful--but not otherwise.

10th.--I sent Kidgwiga with my compliments to the king, and a
request that his majesty would change my residence, which was so
filthy that I found it necessary to pitch a tent, and also that
he would favour me with an interview after breakfast. The return
was a present of twenty cows, ten cocks, two bales of flour, and
two pots of pombe, to be equally divided between Grant and
myself, as Kamrasi recognised in us two distinct camps, because
we approached his country by two different routes--a smart method
for expecting two presents from us, which did not succeed, as I
thanked for all, Grant being "my son" on this occasion. The king
also sent his excuses, and begged pardon for what happened to us
on entering his country, saying it could not have taken place had
we come from Rumanika direct. His fear of the Waganda gave rise
to it, and he trusted we would forget and forgive. To-morrow our
residence should be changed, and an interview follow, for he
desired being friends with us just as much as we did with him.

At last Bombay came back. He reported that he had not been
allowed to leave the palace earlier, though he pleaded hard that
I expected his return; and the only excuse he could extract from
the king was, that we were coming in charge of many Wakungu, and
he had found it necessary to retard our approach in consequence
of the famine at Chaguzi. His palace proper was not here, but
three marches westward: he had come here and pitched a camp to
watch his brothers, who were at war with him. Bombay, doing his
best to escape, or to hurry my march, replied that he was very
anxious on our account, because the Waganda wished to snatch us

It was no doubt this hint that brought the messenger to our
relief yesterday; and otherwise we might have been kept in the
jungle longer. When told by Bombay of our treatment on the Nile,
the king first said he did not think we wished to see him, else
we would have come direct from Rumanika; but when asked if
Baraka's coming with Rumanika's officers was not sufficient to
satisfy him on this point, he hung down his head, and evaded the
question, saying he had been the making of Mtesa of Uganda; but
he had turned out a bad fellow, and now robbed him right and
left.[FN#23] The Gani letter, supposed to be from Petherick, was
now asked for, and a suggestion made about opening a trade with
Gani, but all with the provoking result we had been so well
accustomed to. No letter like that referred to had ever been
received, so that Frij's interpretation about Grant's letter-
dream was right; and if we wished to go to Gani, the king would
send men travelling by night, for his brothers at war with him
lay upon the road. As to the Uganda question, and my desiring
him to make friends with Mtesa, in hopes that the influence of
trade would prevent any plundering in future, he merely tossed
his head. He often said he did not know what to think about his
guests, now he had got them; to which Bombay, in rather
successful imitation of what he had heard me say on like
occasions, replied, "If you do not like them after you have seen
them, cut their heads off, for they are all in your hands."

11th.--With great apparent politeness Kamrasi sent in the morning
to inquire how we had slept. He had "heard our cry"--an
expression of regal condescension--and begged we would not be
alarmed, for next morning he would see us, and after the meeting
change our residence, when, should we not approve of wading to
his palace, he would bridge all the swamps leading up to it; but
for the present he wanted two rounds of ball-cartridge--one to
fire before his women, and the other before his officers and a
large number of Kidi men who were there on a visit. To please
this childish king, Bombay was sent with two other of my men, and
no sooner arrived than a cow was placed before them to be shot.
Bombay, however, thinking easy compliance would only lead to
continued demands on our short store of powder, said he had no
order to shoot cows, and declined. A strong debated ensued, which
Bombay, by his own account, turned to advantage, by saying, "What
use is there in shooting cows? we have lots of meat; what we want
is flour to eat with it." To which the great king retorted, "If
you have not got flour, that is not my fault, for I ordered your
master to come slowly, and to bring provisions along with him."

Then getting impatient, as all his visitors wanted sport, he
ordered the cow out again, and insisted on my men shooting at it,
saying at the same time to his Kidi visitors, boastfully, "Now I
will show you what devils these Wanguana are: with firearms they
can kill a cow with one bullet; and as they are going to Gani, I
advise you not to meddle with them." The Kidi visitors said,
"Nonsense; we don't believe in their power, but we will see."
Irate at his defeat, Bombay gave orders to the men to fire over
the cow, and told Kamrasi why he had done so--Bana would be angry
with him. "Well," said the king of kings, "if that is true, go
back to your master, tell him you have disappointed me before
these men, and obtain permission to shoot the cow in the morning;
after which, should you succeed, your master can come after
breakfast to see me--but for the present, take him this pot of

12th.--To back Bombay in what he had said, I gave him two more
cartridges to shoot the cow with, and orders as well to keep
Kamrasi to his word about the oft-promised interview and change
of residence. He gave me the following account on his return: --
Upwards of a thousand spectators were present when he killed the
cow, putting both bullets into her, and all in a voice, as soon
as they saw the effect of the shot, shouted in amazement; the
Kidi visitors, all terror-stricken, crying out, as they clasped
their breasts, "Oh, great king, do allow us to return to our
country, for you have indeed got a new specimen of man with you,
and we are greatly afraid!"--a lot of humbug and affectation to
flatter the king, which pleased him greatly. It was not
sufficient, however, to make him forget his regal pride; for
though Bombay pleaded hard for our going to see him, and for a
change of residence, the immovable king, to maintain the imperial
state he had assumed as "king of kings," only said, "What
difference does it make whether your master sees me to-day or to-
morrow? If he wants to communicate about the road to Gani, his
property at Karague, or the guns at Uganda, he can do so as well
through the medium of my officers as with me direct, and I will
send men whenever he wishes to do so. Perhaps you don't know, but
I expect men from Gani every day, who took a present of slaves,
ivory and monkey-skins to the foreigners residing there, who, in
the first instance sent me a necklace of beads [showing them] by
some men who wore clothes. They said white men were coming from
Karague, and requested the beads might be shown them should they
do so. They left this two moons before Baraka arrived here, and
I told them the white men would not come here, as I heard they
had gone to Uganda."

Bombay then, finding the king very communicative, went at him for
his inhospitality towards us, his turning us back from his
country twice, and now, after inviting us, treating us as
Suwarora did. On this he gave, by Bombay's account, the following
curious reason for his conduct:--"You don't understand the
matter. At the time the white men were living in Uganda, many of
the people who had seen them there came and described them as
such monsters, they ate up mountains and drank the N'yanza dry;
and although they fed on both beef and mutton, they were not
satisfied until they got a dish of the 'tender parts' of human
beings three times a-day. Now, I was extremely anxious to see
men of such wonderful natures. I could have stood their
mountain-eating and N'yanzi-drinking capacities, but on no
consideration would I submit to sacrifice my subjects to their
appetites, and for this reason I first sent to turn them back;
but afterwards, on hearing from Dr K'yengo's men that, although
the white men had travelled all through their country, and
brought all the pretty and wonderful things of the world there,
they had never heard such monstrous imputations cast upon them, I
sent a second time to call them on: these are the facts of the
case. Now, with regard to your accusation of my treating them
badly, it is all their own fault. I ordered them to advance
slowly and pick up food by the way, as there is a famine here;
but they, instead, hurried on against my wishes. That they want
to see and give me presents you have told me repeatedly--so do I
them; for I want them to teach me the way to shoot, and when that
is accomplished, I will take them to an island near Kidi, where
there are some men [his refractory brothers] whom I wish to
frighten away with guns; but still there is no hurry,--they can
come when I choose to call them, and not before." Bombay to this
said, "I cannot deliver such a message to Bana; I have told so
many falsehoods about your saying you will have an interview to-
morrow, I shall only catch a flogging"; and forthwith departed.

13th.--More disgusted with Kamrasi than ever, I called Kidgwiga
up, and told him I was led to expect from Rumanika that I should
find his king a good and reasonable man, which I believed,
considering it was said by an unprejudiced person. Mtesa, on the
contrary, told me Kamrasi treated all his guests with disrespect,
sending them to the farther side of the N'yanzi. I now found his
enemy more truthful than his friend, and wished him to be told
so. "For the future, I should never," I said, "mention his name
again, but wait until his fear of me had vanished; for he quite
forgot his true dignity as a host and king in his surprise and
fear, merely because we were in a hurry and desired to see him."
He was reported to-day, by the way, to be drunk.

As nothing could be done yesterday, in consequence of the king
being in his cups, the Wakungu conveyed my message to-day, but
with the usual effect, till a diplomatic idea struck me, and I
sent another messenger to say, if our residence was not changed
at once, both Grant and myself had made up our minds to cut off
our hair and blacken our faces, so that the king of all kings
should have no more cause to fear us. Ignoring his claims to
imperial rank, I maintained that his reason for ill-treating us
must be fear, --it could be nothing else. This message acted
like magic; for he fully believed we would do as we said, and
disappoint him altogether of the strange sight of us as pure
white men. The reply was, Kamrasi would not have us disfigured
in this way for all the world; men were appointed to convey our
traps to the west end at once; and Kidgwiga, Vittagura, and
Kajunju rushed over to give us the news in all hast lest we
should execute our threat, and they were glad to find us with our
faces unchanged. I now gave one cow to the head of Dr K'yengo's
party, and one to the head of Rumanika's men, because I saw it
was through their instrumentality we gained admittance in the
country; and we changed residence to the west end of Chaguzi, and
found there comfortable huts close to the Kafu, which ran
immediately between us and the palace.

Still our position in Unyoro was not a pleasant one. In a long
field of grass, as high as the neck, and half under water, so
that no walks could be taken, we had nothing to see but Kamrasi's
miserable huts and a few distant conical hills, of which one
Udongo, we conceive, represents the Padongo of Brun-Bollet,
placed by him in 1 south latitude, and 35 east longitude. We
were scarcely inside our new dwelling when Kamrasi sent a cheer
of two pots pombe, five fowls, and two bunches of plantains,
hoping we were now satisfied with his favour; but he damped the
whole in a moment again, by asking for a many-bladed knife which
his officers had seen in Grant's possession. I took what he
sent, from fear of giving offence, but replied that I was
surprised the great king should wish to see my property before
seeing myself, and although I attached no more value to my
property than he did to his, I could not demean myself by sending
him trifles in that way. However, should he, after hearing my
sentiments, still persist in asking for the knife to be sent by
the hands of a black man, I would pack it up with all the things
I had brought for him, and send them by a black man, judging that
he liked black men more than white.

Dr K'yengo's men then informed us they had been twice sent with
an army of Wanyoro to attack the king's brothers, on a river-
island north of this about three days' journey, but each time it
ended in nothing. You fancy yourself, they said, in a
magnificent army, but the enemy no sooner turn out than the
cowardly Wanyoro fly, and sacrifice their ally as soon as not
into the hands of the opponents. They said Kamrasi would not
expect us to attack them with our guns. Rionga was the head of
the rebels; there were formerly five, but now only two of the
brothers remained.

15th.--Kamrasi, after inquiring after our health, and how we had
slept, through a large deputation of head men, alluded to the
knife question of yesterday, thinking it very strange that after
giving me such nice food I should deny him the gratification of
simply looking at a knife; he did not intend to keep it if it was
not brought for him, but merely to look at and return it. To my
reply of yesterday I added, I had been led, before entering
Unyoro, to regard Kamrasi as the king of all kings--the greatest
king that ever was, and one worthy to be my father; but now, as
he expected me to amuse him with toys, he had lowered himself in
my estimation to the position of being my child. To this the
sages said, "Bana speaks beautifully, feelingly, and moderately.
Of course he is displeased at seeing his property preferred
before himself; all the right is on his side: we will now return
and see what can be done--though none but white men in their
greatest dare send such messages to our king."

Dr K'yengo's men were now attacked by Kidgwiga for having taken a
cow from me yesterday, and told they should not eat it, because
both they and myself were the king's guests, and it ill became
one to eat that which was given as a dinner for the other.
Fortunately, foreseeing this kind of policy, as Kamrasi had been
watching our actions, I invariably gave in presents those cows
which came with us from Uganda, and therefore defied any one to
meddle with them. This elicited the true facts of the case. Dr
K'yengo's men had been sent out to our camp to observe if anybody
received presents from us, as Kamrasi feared his subjects would
have the fleecing of us before his turn came; and these men had
reported the two cows given by me as mentioned above. Kamrasi no
sooner heard of this than he took the cows and kept them himself.
In their justification, Dr K'yengo's men said that had they not
been in the country before us, Kamrasi would not have had such
guests at all; for when he asked them if the Waganda reports
about our cannibalism and other monstrosities were true, their
head man denied it all, offered to stand security for our
actions, and told the king if he found us cannibals he might make
a Mohammedan of him, and sealed the statement with his oath by
throwing down his shield and bow and walking over them. To this
Kamrasi was said to have replied, "I will accept your statements,
but you must remain with me until they come."

Kajunju came with orders to say Kamrasi would seize anybody found
staring at us. I requested a definite answer would be given as
regards Kamrasi's seeing us. Dr K'yengo's men then said they
were kept a week waiting before they could obtain an interview,
whilst Kajunju excused his king by saying, "At present the court
is full of Kidi, Chopi, Gani, and other visitors, who he does not
wish should see you, as some may be enemies in disguise. They
are all now taking presents of cows from Kamrasi, and going to
their homes, and, as soon as they are disposed of, your turn will

16th.--We kept quiet all day, to see what effect that would have
upon the king. Kidgwiga told us that, when he was a lad, Kamrasi
sent him with a large party of Wanyoro to visit a king who lived
close to a high mountain, two months' journey distant, to the
east or south-east of this, and beg for a magic horn, as that
king's doctor was peculiarly famed for his skill as a magician.
The party carried with them 600 majembe (iron spades), two of
which expended daily paid for their board and lodgings on the
way. The horn applied for was sent by a special messenger to
Kamrasi, who, in return, sent one of his horns; from which date,
the two kings, whenever one of them wishes to communicate with
the other, sends, on the messenger's neck, the horn that had been
given him, which both serves for credentials and security, as no
one dare touch a Mbakka with one of these horns upon his neck.

A common source of conversation among our men now was the
desertion of their comrades, all fancying how bitterly they would
repent it when they heard how we had succeeded, eating beef every
day; and Uledi now, in a joking manner, abused Mektub for having
urged him to desert. He would not leave Bana, and if he had not
stopped, Mektub would have gone, for they both served one master
at Zanzibar, and therefore were like brothers; whilst Mektub,
laughing over the matter as if it were a good joke, said, "I
packed up my things to go, it is true; but I reflected if I got
back to the coast Said Majid would only make a slave of me
again." M'yinzuggi, the head of Rumanika's party, gave me to-day
a tippet monkey-skin in return for the cow I had given him on the
14th. These men, taking their natures from their king Rumanika,
are by far the most gentle, polite, and attentive of any black
men we have travelled amongst.

17th.--Tired and out of patience with our prison--a river of
crocodiles on one side, and swamps in every other direction,
while we could not go out shooting without a specific order from
the king--I sent Kidgwiga and Kajunju to inform Kamrasi that we
could bear this life no longer. As he did not wish to see white
men, our residing here could be of no earthly use. I hoped he
would accept our present from Bombay, and give us leave to depart
for Gani. The Wakungu, who thought, as well as ourselves, that
we were in nothing better than a prison, hurried off with the
message, and soon returned with a message from their king that he
was busily engaged decorating his palace to give us a triumphant
reception; for he was anxious to pay us more respect than anybody
who had ever visited him before. We should have seen him
yesterday, only that it rained; and, as a precaution against our
meeting being broken up, a shed was being built. He could not
hear of our leaving the country without seeing him.

18th.--At last we were summoned to attend the king's levee; but
the suspicious creature wished his officers to inspect the things
we had brought for him before we went there. Here was another
hitch. I could not submit to such disrespectful suspicions, but
if he wished Bombay to convey my present to him, I saw no harm in
the proposition. The king waived the point, and we all started,
carrying as a present the things enumerated in the note.[FN#24]
The Union Jack led the way. At the ferry three shots were fired,
when, stepping into two large canoes, we all went across the Kafu
together, and found, to our surprise, a small hut built for the
reception, low down on the opposite bank, where no strange eyes
could see us.

Within this, sitting on a low wooden stool placed upon a double
matting of skins--cows' below and leopards' above--on an elevated
platform of grass, was the great king Kamrasi, looking,
enshrouded in his mbugu dress, for all the world like a pope in
state--calm and actionless. One bracelet of fine-twisted brass
wire adorned his left wrist, and his hair, half an inch long, was
worked up into small peppercorn-like knobs by rubbing the hand
circularly over the crown of the head. His eyes were long, face
narrow, and nose prominent, after the true fashion of his breed;
and though a finely-made man, considerably above six feet high,
he was not so large as Rumanika. A cow-skin, stretched out and
fastened to the roof, acted as a canopy to prevent dust falling,
and a curtain of mbugu concealed the lower parts of the hut, in
front of which, on both sides of the king, sat about a dozen head

This was all. We entered and took seats on our own iron stools,
whilst Bombay placed all the presents upon the ground before the
throne. As no greetings were exchanged, and all at first
remained as silent as death, I commenced, after asking about his
health, by saying I had journeyed six long years (by the African
computation of five months in the year) for the pleasure of this
meeting, coming by Karague instead of by the Nile, because the
"Wanya Beri" (Bari people at Gondokoro) had defeated the projects
of all former attempts made by white men to reach Unyoro. The
purpose of my coming was to ascertain whether his majesty would
like to trade with our country, exchanging ivory for articles of
European manufacture; as, should he do so, merchants would come
here in the same way as they went from Zanzibar to Karague.
Rumanika and Mtesa were both anxious for trade, and I felt sorry
he would not listen to my advice and make friend with Mtesa; for
unless the influence of trade was brought in to check the Waganda
from pillaging the country, nothing would do so.

Kamrasi, in a very quiet, mild manner, instead of answering the
questions, told us of the absurd stories which he had heard from
the Waganda, said he did not believe them, else his rivers,
deprived of their fountains, would have run dry; and he thought,
if we did eat hills and the tender parts of mankind, we should
have had enough to satisfy our appetites before we reached
Unyoro. Now, however, he was glad to see that, although our hair
was straight and our faces white, we still possessed hands and
feel like other men.

The present was then opened, and everything in turn placed upon
the red blanket. The goggles created some mirth; so did the
scissors, as Bombay, to show their use, clipped his beard, and
the lucifers were considered a wonder; but the king scarcely
moved or uttered any remarks till all was over, when, at the
instigation of the courtiers, my chronometer was asked for and
shown. This wonderful instrument, said the officers (mistaking
it for my compass), was the magic horn by which the white men
found their way everywhere. Kamrasi said he must have it, for,
besides it, the gun was the only thing new to him. The
chronometer, however, I said, was the only one left, and could
not possibly be parted with; though, if Kamrasi liked to send men
to Gani, a new one could be obtained for him.

Then, changing the subject, much to my relief, Kamrasi asked
Bombay, "Who governs England?" "A woman." "Has she any
children?" "Yes," said Bombay, with ready impudence; "these are
two of them" (pointing to Grant and myself). That settled,
Kamrasi wished to know if we had any specked cows, or cows of any
peculiar colour, and would we like to change four large cows for
four small ones, as he coveted some of ours. This was a
staggerer. We had totally failed, then, in conveying to this
stupid king the impression that we were not mere traders, ready
to bargain with him. We would present him with cows if we had
such as he wanted, but we could not bargain. The meeting then
broke up in the same chilling manner as it began, and we returned
as we came, but no sooner reached home than four pots of pombe
were sent us, with a hope that we had arrived all safely. The
present gave great satisfaction. The Wanguana accused Frij of
having "unclean hands," because the beef had not lasted so long
as it should do--it being a notable fact in Mussulman creed, that
unless the man's hands are pure who cuts the throat of an animal,
its flesh will not last fresh half the ordinary time.

19th.--As the presents given yesterday occupied the king's mind
too much for other business, I now sent to offer him one-third of
the guns left in Uganda, provided he would send some messengers
with one of my men to ask Mtesa for them, and also the same
proportion of the sixty loads of property left in charge of
Rumanika at Karague, if he would send the requisite number of
porters for its removal. But of all things, I said, I most
wished to send a letter to Petherick at Gani, to apprise him of
our whereabouts, for he must have been four years waiting our
arrival there, and by the same opportunity I would get a watch
for the king. He sent us to-day two pots of pombe, one sack of
salt, and what might be called a screw of butter, with an
assurance that the half of everything that came to his house--
and everything was brought from great distances in boats--he
would give me; but for the present the only thing he was in need
of was some medicine or stimulants. Further, I need be under no
apprehension if I did not find men at once to go on the three
respective journeys; it should be all done in good time, for he
loved me much, and desired to show us so much respect that his
name should be celebrated for it in songs of praise until he was
bowed down by years, and even after death it should be

I ascertained then that the salt, which was very white and pure,
came from an island on the Little Luta Nzige, about sixty miles
west from the Chaguzi palace, where the lake is said to be forty
or fifty miles wide. It is the same piece of water we heard of
in Karague as the Little Luta Nzige, beyond Utumbi; and the same
story of Unyoro being an island circumscribed by it and the
Victoria N'yanza connected by the Nile, is related here, showing
that both the Karague and Unyoro people, as indeed all negroes
and Arabs, have the common defect in their language, of using the
same word for a peninsula and an island. The Waijasi--of whom we
saw a specimen in the shape of an old woman, with her upper lip
edged with a row of small holes, at Karague--occupy a large
island on this lake named Gasi, and sometimes come to visit
Kamrasi. Ugungu, a dependency of Kamrasi's, occupies this side,
the lake, and on the opposite side is Ulegga; beyond which, in
about 2 N. lat. And 28 E. long., is the country of Namachi; and
further west still about 2, the Wilyanwantu, or cannibals, who,
according to the report both here and at Karague, "bury cows but
eat men." These distant people pay their homage to Kamrasi,
though they have six degrees of longitude to travel over. They
are, I believe, a portion of the N'yam N'yams--another name for
cannibal--whose country Petherick said he entered in 1857-58.
Among the other wild legends about this people, it was said that
the Wilyanwantu, in making brotherhood, exchanged their blood by
drinking at one another's veins; and, in lieu of butter with
their porridge, they smear it with the fat of fried human flesh.

20th.--I had intended for to-day an expedition to the lake; but
Kamrasi, harbouring a wicked design that we should help in an
attack on his brothers, said there was plenty of time to think of
that; we would only find that all the waters united go to Gani,
and he wished us to be his guests for three or four months at
least. Fifty Gani men had just arrived to inform him that Rionga
had lately sent ten slaves and ten ivory tusks to Petherick's
post, to purchase a gun; but the answer was, that a thousand
times as much would not purchase a weapon that might be used
against us; for our arrival with Kamrasi had been heard of, and
nothing would be done to jeopardise our road.

To talk over this matter, the king invited us to meet him. We
went as before, minus the flag and firing, and met a similar
reception. The Gani news was talked over, and we proposed sending
Bombay with a letter at once. I could get no answer; so, to pass
the time, we wished to know from the king's own lips if he had
prevented Baraka from going to Gani, as he had carried orders
from Rumanika as well as from myself to visit Kamrasi, to give
him fifty egg-beads, seventy necklaces of mtende, and seventy
necklaces of kutuamnazi beads, and then to pass on to Gani and
give its chief fifty egg-beads and forty necklaces of kutuamnazi.
Kamrasi replied, "I did not allow him to go, because I heard you
had gone to Uganda"; and Dr K'yengo's men happening to be
present, added, "Baraka used up all the beads save forty which he
gave to Kamrasi, living upon goats all the way; and when he left,
took back a tusk of ivory."

This little controversy was amusing, but did not suit Kamrasi,
who had his eye on a certain valuable possession of mine. He
made his approach towards it by degrees, beginning with a truly
royal speech thus: "I am the king of all these countries, even
including Uganda and Kidi--though the Kidi people are such
savages they obey no man's orders--and you are great men also,
sitting on chairs before kings; it therefore ill becomes us to
talk of such trifles as beads, especially as I know if you ever
return this way I shall get more from you." "Begging your
majesty's pardon," I said, "the mention of beads only fell in the
way of our talk like stones in a walk; our motive being to get at
the truth of what Baraka did and said here, as his conduct in
returning after receiving strict orders from Rumanika and
ourselves to open the road, is a perfect enigma to us. We could
not have entered Unyoro at all excepting through Uganda, and we
could not have put foot in Uganda without visiting its king."
Without deigning to answer, Kamrasi, in the metaphorical language
of a black man, said, "It would be unbecoming of me to keep
secrets from you, and therefore I will tell you at once; I am
sadly afflicted with a disorder which you alone can cure." "What
is it, your majesty? I can see nothing in your face; it may
perhaps require a private inspection." "My heart," he said, "is
troubled, because you will not give me your magic horn-- the
thing, I mean, in your pocket, which you pulled out one day when
Budja and Vittagura were discussing the way; and you no sooner
looked at it than you said, 'That is the way to the palace.'"

So! the sly fellow has been angling for the chronometer all this
time, and I can get nothing out of him until he has got it--the
road to the lake, the road to Gani, everything seemed risked on
his getting my watch--a chronometer worth 50, which would be
spoilt in his hands in one day. To undeceive him, and tell him
it was the compass which I looked at and not the watch, I knew
would only end with my losing that instrument as well; so I told
him it was not my guide, but a time-keeper, made for the purpose
of knowing what time to eat my dinner by. It was the only
chronometer I had with me; and I begged he would have patience
until Bombay returned from Gani with another, when he should have
the option to taking this or the new one. "No; I must have the
one in your pocket; pull it out and show it." This was done, and
I placed it on the ground, saying, "The instrument is yours, but
I must keep it until another one comes." "No; I must have it
now, and will send it you three times every day to look at."

The watch went, gold chain and all, without any blessings
following it; and the horrid king asked if I could make up
another magic horn, for he hoped he had deprived us of the power
of travelling, and plumed himself on the notion that the glory of
opening the road would devolve upon himself. When I told him
that to purchase another would cost five hundred cows, the whole
party were more confirmed than ever as to its magical powers; for
who in his sense would give five hundred cows for the mere
gratification of seeing at what time his dinner should be eaten?
Thus ended the second meeting. Kamrasi now said the Gani men
would feast on beef to-morrow, and the next day be ready to start
with my men for Petherick's camp. He then accompanies us to the
boats, spear in hand, and saw us cross the water. Long tail-
hairs of the giraffe surrounded his neck, on which little balls
and other ornaments of minute beads, after the Uganda fashion,
were worked. In the evening four pots of pombe and a pack of
flour were brought, together with the chronometer, which was sent
to be wound up--damaged of course-- the seconds-hand had been

21st.--I heard from Kidgwiga that some of those Gani men now
ordered to go with Bombay had actually been visiting here when
the latter shot his first cow at the palace, but had gone to
their homes to give information of us, and had returned again.
Eager to get on with my journey, and see European faces again, I
besought the king to let us depart, as our work was all finished
here, since he had assured us he would like to trade with
England. The N'yanswenge-- meaning Petherick's party--who have
hitherto been afraid to come here, would do so now, when they had
seen us pass safely down, and could receive my guns and property
left to come from Uganda and Karague, which we ourselves could
not wait for. Kamrasi, thinking me angry for his having taken
the watch so rudely out of my pocket, took fright at the message,
sent some of his attendants quickly back to me, requesting me to
keep the instrument until another arrived, and begged I would
never say I wished to leave his house again.

22d.--Kamrasi sent to say Bombay was not to start to-day, but to-
morrow, so we put the screw on again, and said we must go at
once; if he would give us guides to Gani, we would return him his
twenty cows and seven goats with pleasure. I let him understand
we suspected he was keeping us here to fight his brothers, and
told him he must at once know we would never lift hand against
them. It was contrary to the laws of our land. "I have got no
orders to enter into black men's quarrels, and my mother" (the
Queen), "whom I see every night in my sleep calling me home,
would be very angry if she heard of it. Rumanika once asked me
to fight his brothers Rogero and M'yongo, but my only reply to
all had been the same--I have no orders to fight with, only to
make friends of, the great kings of Africa."

The game seemed now to be won. At once Kamrasi ordered Bombay to
prepare for the journey. Five Wanyoro, five Chopi men, and five
Gani men, were to escort him. There was no objection to his
carrying arms. The moment he returned, which ought to be in
little more than a fortnight, we would all go together. An
earnest request was at the same time made that I would not bully
him in the mean time with any more applications to depart. So
Bombay and Mabruki, carrying there muskets, and a map and letter
for Petherick, departed.

23d and 24th.--Kamrasi, presuming he had gained favour in our
eyes, sent, begging to know how we had slept, and said he would
like us to inform him what part of his journey Bombay had this
morning reached --a fact which he had no doubt must be divinable
through the medium of our books. The reply was, that Bombay's
luck was so good we had no doubt regarding his success; but now
he had gone, and our days here were numbered, we should like to
see the palace, his fat wives and children, as well as the
Wanyoro's dances, and all the gaiety of the place. We did not
think our reception-hut by the river sufficiently dignified, and
our residence here was altogether like that of prisoners--seeing
no one, knowing no one. In answer to this, Kamrasi sent one pot
of pombe and five fowls, begging we would not be alarmed; we
should see everything in good time, if we would but have
patience, for he considered us very great men, as he was a great
man himself, and we had come at his invitation. He must request,
in the mean time, that we would send no more messages by his
officers, as such messages are never conveyed properly. At
present there was a great deal of business in the palace.

We asked for some butter, but could get none, as all the milk in
the palace was consumed by the wives and children, drinking all
day long, to make themselves immovably fat.

25th.--In the morning, the commander-in-chief wished us to cast a
horoscope, and see where Bombay was, and if he were getting on
well. That being negatived, he told us to put our hut in order,
as Kamrasi was coming to see us. Accordingly we made everything
as smart as possible, hanging the room round with maps, horns,
and skins of animals, and places a large box covered with a red
blanket, as a throne for the king to set upon. As he advanced,
my men, forming a guard of honour fired three shots immediately
on his setting foot upon our side the river; whilst Frij, with
his boatswain's whistle, piped the 'Rogue's March,' to prepare us
for his majesty's approach. We saluted him, hat in hand, and,
leading the way, showed him in. He was pleased to be
complimentary, remarking, what Waseja (fine men) we were, and
took his seat. We sat on smaller boxes, to appear humble, whilst
his escort of black "swells" filled the doorway, squatting on the
ground, so as to stop the light and interfere with our

After the first salutations, the king remarked the head of a
nsamma buck, and handled it; then noticed my mosquito-curtains
hanging over the bed, and begged for them. He was told they
could not be given until Bombay returned, as the mosquitoes would
eat us up. "But there were two," said the escort, "for we have
seen one in the other hut." That was true; but were there not
two white men? However, if the king wanted gauze, here was a
smart gauze veil-- and the veil vanished at once. The iron camp-
bed was next inspected, and admired; then the sextant, which was
coveted and begged for, but without success, much to the
astonishment of the king, as his attendants had led him to expect
he would get anything he asked for. Then the thermometers were
wanted and refused; also table-knives, spoons, forks, and even
cooking-pots, for we had no others, and could not part with them.
The books of birds and animals had next to be seen, and being
admired were coveted, the king offering one of the books I first
gave him in exchange for one of these. In fact, he wanted to
fleece us of everything; so, to shut him up, I said I would not
part with one bird for one hundred tusks of ivory; they were all
the collections I had made in Africa, and if I parted with them
my journey would go for nothing; but if he wanted a few drawings
of birds I would do some for him-- at present I wished to speak
to him. "Well, what is it? we are all attention." "I wish to
know positively if you would like English traders to come here
regularly, as the Arabs do to trade at Karague? and if so, would
you give me a pembe (magic horn) as a warrant, that everybody may
know Kamrasi, king of Unyoro, desires it?"

Kamrasi replied, "I like your proposition very much; you shall
have the horn you ask for, either large or small, just as you
please; and after you have gone, should we hear any English are
at Gani wishing to come here, as my brothers are in the way we
will advance with spears whilst they approach with guns, and
between us both, my brothers must fly--for I myself will head the
expedition. But now you have had your say I will have mine if you
will listen." "All right, your majesty; what is it?" "I am
constantly stricken with fever and pains, for which I know no
remedy but cautery; my children die young; my family is not large
enough to uphold my dignity and station in life; in fact, I am
infirm and want stimulants, and I wish you to prescribe for me,
which considering you have found your way to this, where nobody
came before, must be easy to you." Two pills and a draught for
the morning were given as a preliminary measure, argument being
of no avail; and to our delight the king said it was time to go.

We jumped off our seats to show him the way, hoping our
persecutions were over; but still he sat, and sat, until at
length, finding we did not take the hint to give him a parting
present, he said, "I never visited any big man's house without
taking home some trifle to show my wife and children." "Indeed,
great king! then you did not come to visit us, but to beg, eh?
You shall have nothing, positively nothing; for we will not have
it said the king did not come to see us, but to beg." Kamrasi's
face changed colour; he angrily said, "Irokh togend" (let us rise
and go), and forthwith walked straight out of the hut. Frij
piped, but no guns fired; and as he asked the reason why he was
told it would be offensive to say we were glad he was going. The
king was evidently not pleased for no pombe came to-day.

Chapter XVIII


The Ceremonies of the New Moon--Kamrasi's Rule and Discipline--
An Embassy from Uganda, and its Results--The Rebellious Brothers-
- An African Sorcerer and his Incantations--The Kamraviona of
Unyoro-- Burial Customs--Ethiopian Legends--Complicated Diplomacy
for our Detention--Proposal to send Princes to England--We get

26th.--We found that the palace was shut up in consequence of the
new moon, seen for the first time last evening; and incessant
drumming was the order of the day. Still, private interviews
might be granted, and I sent to inquire after the state of the
king's health. The reply was, that the medicine had not taken,
and the king was very angry because nothing was given him when he
took the trouble to call on us. He never called at a big man's
house and left it mwiko (empty-handed) before; if there was
nothing else to dispose of, could Bana not have given him a bag
of beads?

To save us from this kind of incessant annoyance, I now thought
it would be our best policy to mount the high horse and bully
him. Accordingly, we tied up a bag of the commonest mixed beads,
added the king's chronometer, and sent them to Kamrasi with a
violent message that we were thoroughly disgusted with all that
had happened; the beads were for the poor beggar who came to our
house yesterday, not to see us, but to beg; and as we did not
desire the acquaintance of beggars, we had made up our minds
never to call again, nor receive any more bread or wine from the

This appeared to be a hit. Kamrasi, evidently taken aback, said,
if he thought he should have offended us by begging, he would not
have begged. He was not a poor man, for he had many cows, but he
was a beggar, of course, when beads were in the question; and,
having unwittingly offended, as he desired our friendship, he
trusted his offence would be forgiven. On opening the
chronometer, he again wrenched back the seconds-hand, and sent it
for repair, together with two pots of pombe as a peace-offering.
Frij, who accompanied the deputation, overheard the counsellors
tell their king that the Waganda were on their way back to Unyoro
to snatch us away; on hearing which the king asked his men if
they would ever permit it; and, handling his spear as if for
battle, said at the same time he would lose his own head before
they should touch his guests. Then, turning to Frij, he said,
"What would you do if they came?--go back with them?" To which
Frij said, "No, never, when Gani is so near; they might cut our
heads off, but that is all they could do." The watch being by
this time repaired, it gave me the opportunity of sending
Kidgwiga back to the palace to say we trusted Kamrasi would allow
Budja to come here, if only with one woman to carry his pombe,
else Mtesa would take offence, form an alliance with Rionga, and
surround the place with warriors, for it was not becoming in
great kings to treat civil messengers like dogs.

The reply to this was, that Kamrasi was very much pleased with my
fatherly wisdom and advice, and would act up to it, allowing
Budja only to approach with one woman; we need, however, be under
no apprehensions, for Kamrasi's power was infinite; the Gani road
should be opened even at the spear's point; he had been beating
the big drum in honour of us the whole day; he would not allow
any beggars to come and see us, for he wanted us all to himself,
and for this reason had ordered a fence to be built all round our
house; but he had got no present from Grant yet, though all he
wanted was his mosquito-curtains, whilst he wished my picture-
books to show his women, and be returned. We sent a picture of
Mtesa as a gift, the two books to look at and an acknowledgement
that the mosquito-curtains were his, only he must have patience
until Bombay arrived; but his proposition about the fence we
rejected with scorn. The king had been raising an army to fight
Rionga--the true reason, we suspect, for the beating of the

27th and 28th.--There was drumming and music all day and night,
and the army was being increased to a thousand men, but we poor
prisoners could see nothing of it. Frij was therefore sent to
inspect the armament and brings us all the news. Some of
N'yamyonjo's men, seeing mine armed with carbines, became very
inquisitive about them, and asked if they were the instruments
which shot at their men on the Nile--one in the arm, who died;
the other on the top of the shoulder, who was recovering. The
drums were kept in private rooms, to which a select few only were
admitted. Kamrasi conducts all business himself, awarding
punishments and seeing them carried out. The most severe
instrument of chastisement is a knob-stick, sharpened at the
back, like that used in Uganda, for breaking a man's neck before
he is thrown into the N'yanza; but this severity is seldom
resorted to, Kamrasi being of a mild disposition compared with
Mtesa, whom he invariably alludes to when ordering men to be
flogged, telling them that were they in Uganda, their heads would
suffer instead of their backs. In the day's work at the palace,
army collecting, ten officers were bound because they failed to
bring a sufficient number of fighting men, but were afterwards
released on their promising to bring more.

Nothing could be more filthy than the state of the palace and all
the lanes leading up to it: it was well, perhaps, that we were
never expected to go there, for without stilts and respirators it
would have been impracticable, such is the dirty nature of the
people. The king's cows, even, are kept in the palace enclosure,
the calves actually entering the hut, where, like a farmer,
Kamrasi walks amongst them up to his ankles in filth, and,
inspecting them, issues his orders concerning them. What has to
be selected for his guests he singles out himself.

Dr K'yengo's men, who had been sent three times into action
against the refractory brothers, asked leave to return to
Karague; but the king, who did not fear for their lives when his
work was to be done, would not give them leave, lest accident
should befall them on the way. We found no prejudice against
eating butter amongst these Wahuma, for they not only sold us
some, but mixed it with porridge and ate it themselves.

29th.--The king has appointed a special officer to keep our table
supplied with sweet potatoes, and sent us a pot of pombe, with
his excuses for not seeing us, as business was so pressing, and
would continue to be so until the army marched. Budja and Kasoro
were again reported to be near with a force of fifty Waganda,
prepared to snatch us away; and the king, fearing the
consequences, had sent to inform Budja, that if he dared attempt
to approach, he would slip us off in boats to Gani, and then
fight it out with the Waganda; for his guests, since they had
been handed over to him, had been treated with every possible

To keep Kamrasi to his promise, as we particularly wished to hear
the Uganda news, Frij was sent to inform him on my behalf that
Mtesa only wished to make friends with all the great kings
surrounding his country before his coronation took place, when
his brothers would be burnt, and he would cease to take advice
from his mother. To treat his messengers disrespectfully could
do no good, and might provoke a war, when we should see my
deserters joined with the Waganda really coming in force against
us; whereas, if we saw Budja, we could satisfy him, and Mtesa
too, and obviate any such calamity. The reply was, that Kamrasi
would arrange for our having a meeting with Budja alone if we
wished it; he did not fear my deserters siding with king Mtesa,
but he detested the Waganda, and could not bear to see them in
his country.

30th.--At breakfast-time we heard that my old friend Kasoro had
come to our camp without permission, to the surprise of
everybody, attended by all his boys, leaving Budja and his
children, on account of sickness, at the camp assigned to the
Waganda, five miles off. Kasoro wished to speak to us, and we
invited him into the hut; but the interview could not be
permitted until Kamrasi's wishes on the subject had been
ascertained. In a little while the Kamraviona, having seen
Kamrasi, said we might converse with one another whilst his
officers were present listening, and sent a cow as a present for
the Waganda. Kasoro with his children now came before us in
their usual merry manner and, after saluting, told us how the
deserters, on reaching Uganda, begged for leave to proceed to
Karague; but Mtesa, who would only allow two of them to approach
him, abused them, saying, "Did I not command you to take Bana to
Gani at all risks? If there was no road by land, you were to go
by water; or, if that failed, to go under-ground, or in the air
above, and if he died, you were to die with him: what, then, do
you mean by deserting him and flying here? You shall not move a
yard from this until I receive a messenger from him to hear what
he has got to say on the matter." Mtesa would not take their
arms, even at the desire of Budja, on my behalf; for as no
messenger on my behalf came to him, he would not believe what
Budja said, and feared to touch any of our property. The chief
item of court news was, that Mtesa had shot a buffalo which was
attacking him behind the palace, and made his Wakungu carry the
animal bodily, whilst life was in it, into his court. The
ammunition I wrote for to Rumanika had been brought by Maula.

As Kasoro still remained silent with regard to Mtesa's message, I
told him we shot two of N'yamyonjo's men on our retreat up the
Nile, and that Kamrasi turned us back because some miscreant
Waganda had forged lies and told him we were terrible monsters,
who ate hills and human flesh, and drank up all the water of the
lake. He laughed, but still was silent; so I said, "What message
have you brought from Mtesa?" To which, in a timid, modest kind
of manner, he said, "Bana knows--what more need I say? Has he
forgotten Mtesa, who loves him so?" I said, "No, indeed, I have
not forgotten Mtesa; and, moreover, as I expected you back again,
I have sent Bombay to bring the stimulants and all the things I
promised Mtesa from Gani; in two or three days he will return."
"No," said Kasoro, "that is not it; we must go to Gani with you;
for Mtesa says he loves you so much he will never allow you to
part from his hand until his servants have seen you safely at
your homes."

I replied, "If Mtesa wishes you to see my vessels and all the
wonders they contain, as far as I am concerned you may do so, and
I shall be only too happy to show you a little English
hospitality; but the road is in Kamrasi's hands, and his wishes
must now be heard." The commander-in-chief, now content with all
he had heard, went to Kamrasi to receive his orders, whilst I
gave Kasoro a feast of porridge and salt, with pombe to wash it
down, and a cow to take home with him; for the poor creatures
said they were all starving as the Wanyoro would not allow them
to take a single plantain from the field until Kamrasi's
permission had been given.

Kamrasi's reply now arrived; it was to the following effect:--
"Tell my children, the Waganda, they were never turned out of
Unyoro by my orders: if they wish to go to Gani, they can do so;
but, first of all, they must return to Mtesa, and ask him to
deliver up all of Bana's men." I answered, "No; if any one of
those scoundrels who has deserted me ever dares show his face to
me again, I will shoot him like a dog. Moreover, I want Mtesa to
take their guns from them, and, without taking life, to transport
them all to an island on the N'yanza, where they can spend their
days in growing plantains; for it is such men who prevent our
travelling in the country and visiting kings." Kasoro on this
said, "Mtesa will do so in a minute if you send a servant to him,
but he won't if we only say you wish it."

The commander-in-chief then added, as to Kasoro's wish to
accompany me, "If Mtesa will send another time one of his people
whose life he wishes sacrificed on the journey, or tells, Here is
a man whom I wish you to send to Gani at all hazards, and without
responsibility for his life on our part, we will be very glad to
send him; but as we are at war with the Gani people continually,
there will be no security for a Mganda's life there." To this I
added, "Now, Kasoro, you see how it is; Kamrasi does not wish you
to do to Gani, so if you take my advice you will return to Mtesa.
Give this tin cartridge-box, which first came from him, back to
him again, to show him you have seen me, and say, This is Bana's
letter; he wishes you to transport the deserters and seize their
guns. The guns, of course, I shall want again at some other
time, when I will send one of my English children to visit him;
for now Kamrasi has opened his country to us, and given us leave
to come and purchase ivory, I never shall be very far away." I
gave them three pills for Budja, blistered two of the pages, and
started the whole merrily off, Kasoro asking me to send Mtesa
some pretty things from England such as he never saw.

1st.--Kamrasi sent his commander-in-chief to inquire after my
health, and to say Budja had left in fear and trembling lest
Mtesa should cut all their heads off for failing in the mission;
but he had sent Kidgwiga's brother with a pot of pombe to escort
the Waganda beyond his frontier, and cheer them on the way; for
the tin cartridge-box, he thought, would save their lives by
satisfying Mtesa they had seen me. The commander-in-chief then
told me Kamrasi did not wish them to accompany me through Kidi
for the Kidi people don't like the Waganda, and, discovering
their nationality by the fullness of their teeth, would bring
trouble on us whilst trying to kill them. I said I thanked
Kamrasi for his having treated the Waganda with such marked
respect, in allowing them to see me, and sending them back with
an escort; but I thought it would have been better if he had
spoken the truth plainly out, for then I could have told them I
feared to have them in company with me. In return for my
civilities, the king then send one of his chopi officers to see
me, who went four stages with Bombay, and he also sent some rich
beads which he wished me to look at. They were nicely kept in a
neat though very large casing of rush pith, and were those sent
as a letter from Gani, to inform him that we were expected to
come via Karague. After this, to keep us in good-humour, Kamrasi
sent to inform us that some Gani men, twenty-five in number, had
just arrived, and had given him a lion-skin, several tippet
monkey-skins, and some giraffe hair, as well as a stick of copper
or brass wire. Bombay was met by them on the confines of Gani.

2d.--The king sent me a pot of pombe to-day, inquiring after my
health, and saying he would like to take the medicine I gave him
if I would send Frij over to administer it, but he would be
ashamed to swallow pills before me. Hitherto he had not been
able to take the medicine from press of business in collecting an
army to fight his brothers; but as his troops would all leave for
war to-day, he expected to have leisure.

In plying the Kamraviona to try if we could get rid of the
annoying restraints which made our residence here a sort of
imprisonment, I discovered that the whole affair was not one of
blunder or accident, but that we actually were prisoners thus be
design. It appeared that Kamrasi's brothers, when they heard we
were coming into Unyoro, murmured, and said to the king, "Why are
you bringing such guests amongst us, who will practise all kinds
of diabolical sorcery, and bring evil on us?" To which Kamrasi
replied, "I have invited them to come, and they shall come; and
if they bring evil with them, let that all fall on my shoulders,
for you shall not see them." He then built a palaver-house on
the banks of the Kafu to receive us in privately; and when we
were to go to Gani, it was his intention to slip us off privately
down the Kafu. The brothers were so thoroughly frightened, that
when Kamrasi opened his chronometer before them to show them the
works in motion, they turned their heads away. The large block-
tin box I gave Kamrasi, as part of his hongo, was, I heard,
called Mzungu, or the white man, by him.

In the evening the beads recently brought from Gani were sent for
my inspection, with an intimation that Kamrasi highly approved of
them, and would like me to give him a few like them. Some of
Kamrasi's spies, whom he had sent to the refractory allies of
Rionga his brother, returned bringing a spear and some grass from
the thatch of the hut of a Chopi chief. The removal of the grass
was a piece of state policy. It was stolen by Kamrasi's orders,
in order that he might spread a charm on the Chopi people, and
gain such an influence over them that their spears could not
prevail against the Wanyoro; but it was thought we might possess
some still superior magic powder, as we had come from such a long
distance, and Kamrasi would prefer to have ours. These Chopi
people were leagued with the brothers, and thus kept the highroad
to Gani, though the other half of Chopi remained loyal; and
though Kamrasi continually sent armies against the refractory
half which aided his brothers, they never retaliated by attacking
this place.

We found, by the way, that certain drumming and harmonious
accompaniments which we had been accustomed to hear all day and
night were to continue for four moons, in celebration of twins
born to Kamrasi since we came here.

3d.--Kamrasi's political department was active again to-day. Some
Gani officials arrived to inform him that there were two white
men in the vessel spoken of as at Gani; a second vessel was
coming in there, and several others were on their way. A
carnelian was shown me which the Gani people gave to Kamrasi many
years ago. Kamrasi expressed a wish that I would exchange magic
powders with him. He had a very large variety, and would load a
horn for me with all those I desired most. He wanted also
medicines for longevity and perpetual strength. Those I had
given him had, he said, deprived him of strength, and he felt
much reduced by their effects. He would like me to go with him
and attack the island his three brothers, Rionga, Wahitu, and
Pohuka, are in possession of. When I said I never fought with
black men, he wished to know if I would not shoot them if they
attacked me. My replay was, alluding to our fight in the river,
"How did N'yamyonjo's men fare?" I found that Kamrasi had thirty
brothers and as many sisters.

4th.--I gave Kamrasi a bottle of quinine, which we call "strong
back," and asked him in return for a horn containing all the
powders necessary to give me the gift of tongues, so that I
should be able to converse with any black men whom I might meet
with. We heard that Kamrasi has called all his Gani guests to
play before him, and a double shot from his Blissett rifle
announced to our ears that he in turn was amusing them. This was
the first time the gun had been discharged since he received it,
and, fearing to fire it himself, he called one of my men to do it
for him.

5th.--At 9 a.m., the time for measuring the fall of rain for the
last twenty-four hours, we found the rain-gauge and the bottle
had been removed, so we sent Kidgwiga to inform the king we
wished his magicians to come at once and institute a search for
it. Kidgwiga immediately returned with the necessary adept, an
old man, nearly blind, dressed in strips of old leather fastened
to the waist, and carrying in one hand a cow's horn primed with
magic powder, carefully covered on the mouth with leather, from
which dangled an iron bell. The old creature jingled the bell,
entered our hut, squatted on his hams, looked first at one, then
at the other-- inquired what the missing things were like,
grunted, moved his skinny arm round his head, as if desirous of
catching air from all four sides of the hut, then dashed the
accumulated air on the head of his horn, smelt it to see if all
was going right, jingled the bell again close to his ear, and
grunted his satisfaction; the missing articles must be found.

To carry out the incantation more effectually, however, all my
men were sent for to sit in the open before the hut, when the old
doctor rose, shaking the horn and tinkling the bell close to his
ear. He then, confronting one of the men, dashed the horn forward
as if intending to strike him on the face, then smelt the head,
then dashed at another, and so on, till he became satisfied that
my men were not the thieves. He then walked into Grant's hut,
inspected that, and finally went to the place where the bottle
had been kept. There he walked about the grass with his arm up,
and jingling the bell to his ear, first on one side, then on the
other, till the track of a hyena gave him the clue, and in two or
three more steps he found it. A hyena had carried it into the
grass and dropped it. Bravo, for the infallible horn! and well
done the king for his honesty in sending it! So I gave the king
the bottle and gauge, which delighted him amazingly; and the old
doctor who begged for pombe, got a goat for his trouble. My men
now, recollecting the powder robbery at Uganda, said king Mtesa
would not send his horn when I asked for it, because he was the
culprit himself.

6th.--Kidgwiga told us to-day that king Kamrasi's sisters are not
allowed to wed; they live and die virgins in his palace. Their
only occupation in life consisted of drinking milk, of which each
one consumes the produce daily of from ten to twenty cows, and
hence they become so inordinately fat that they cannot walk.
Should they wish to see a relative, or go outside the hut for any
purpose, it requires eight men to lift any of them on a litter.
The brothers, too, are not allowed to go out of his reach. This
confinement of the palace family is considered a state necessity,
as a preventive to civil wars, in the same way as the
destruction of the Uganda princes, after a certain season, is
thought necessary for the preservation of peace there.

7th.--In the morning the Kamraviona called, on the king's behalf,
to inquire after my health, and also to make some important
communications. First he was to request a supply of bullets,
that the king might fire a salute when Bombay returned from Gani;
next, to ask for stimulative medicine, now that he had consumed
all I gave him, and gone through the preliminary course; further,
to request I would spread a charm over all his subjects, so that
their hearts might be inclined towards him, and they would come
without calling and bow down at his feet; finally, he wished me
to exchange my blood with him, that we might be brothers till
death. I sent the bullets, advised him to wait a day or two for
the medicine, and said there was only one charm by which he could
gain the influence he required over his subjects--this was,
knowledge and the power of the pen. Should he desire some of my
children (meaning missionaries) to come here and instruct his,
the thing would be done; but not in one year, nor even ten, for
it takes many years to educate children.

As to exchanging by blood with a black man's, it was a thing
quite beyond my comprehension; though Rumanika, I must confess,
had asked me to do the same thing. The way the English make
lasting friendships is done either by the expressions of their
hearts, or by the exchange of some trifles, as keepsakes; and
now, as I had given Kamrasi some specimens of English
manufacture, he might give me a horn, or anything else he chose,
which I could show to my friends, so as to keep him in
recollection all my life.

The Kamraviona, before leaving, said, for our information, that a
robbery had occurred in the palace last night; for this morning,
when Kamrasi went to inspect his Mzungu (the block-tin box),
which he had forgotten to lock, he found all his beads had been
stolen. After sniffing round among the various wives, he smelt
the biggest one to be the culprit, and turned the beads out of
her possession. Deputies came in the evening with a pot of pombe
and small screw of butter, to tell me some Gani people had just
arrived, bringing information that the vessel at Gani had left to
go down the river; but when intelligence reached the vessel of
the approach of my men they turned and came back again. Bombay
was well feasted on the road by Kamrasi's people, receiving eight
cows from one and two cows from another.

8th and 9th.--We had a summons to attend at the Kafu palace with
the medicine-chest, a few select persons only to be present. It
rained so much on the 8th as to stop the visit, but we went next
day. After arriving there, and going through the usual
salutations, Kamrasi asked us from what stock of people we came,
explaining his meaning by saying, "As we, Rumanika, Mtesa, and
the rest of us (enumerating the kings), are Wawitu (or princes),
Uwitu (or the country of princes) being to the east." This
interesting announcement made me quite forget to answer his
question, and induced me to say, "Omwita, indeed, as the ancient
names for Mombas, if you came from that place: I know all about
your race for two thousand years or more. Omwita, you mean, was
the last country you resided in before you came here, but
originally you came from Abyssinia, the sultan of which, our
great friend, is Sahela Selassie."

He pronounced this name laughing, and said, "Formerly our stock
was half-white and half-black, with one side of our heads covered
with straight hair, and the other side frizzly: you certainly do
know everything." The subject then turned upon medicine, and
after inspecting the chest, and inquiring into all its contents,
it ended by his begging for the half of everything. The
mosquito-curtains were again asked for, and refused until I
should leave this. As Kamrasi was anxious I should take two of
his children to England to be instructed, I agreed to do so, but
said I thought it would be better if he invited missionaries to
come here and educate all his family. His cattle were much
troubled with sickness, dying in great numbers--could I cure
them? As he again began to persecute us with begging, wanting
knives and forks, etc., I advised his using ivory as money, and
purchasing what he wanted from Gani. This brought out the
interesting fact, the truth of which we had never reached before,
that when Petherick's servant brought him one necklace of beads,
and asked after us, he gave in return fourteen ivories, thirteen
women, and seven mbugu cloths. One of his men accompanied the
visitors back to the boats, and saw Petherick, who took the ivory
and rejected the women.

10th.--At 2 p.m. we were called by Kamrasi to visit him at the
Kafu palace again, and requested to bring a lot of medicines tied
up in various coloured cloths, so that he might know what to
select for different ailments. We repaired there as before,
putting the medicines into the sextand-stand box, and found him
lying at full length on the platform of his throne, with a glass-
bead necklace of various colours, and a charm tied on his left
arm. Nobody was allowed to be present at our interview. The
medicines, four varieties, were weighed out into ten doses each,
and their uses and effects explained. He begged for four bottles
to put them in, till he was laughed out of it by our saying he
required forty bottles; for if the powders were mixed, how could
he separate them again? And to keep his mind from the begging
tack, which he was getting alarmingly near, I said, "Now I have
given you these things because you would insist on having them.
I must also tell you they are dangerous in your hands, in
consequence of your being ignorant of their properties. If you
take my advice you won't meddle with them until the two children
you wish educated have learnt the use of them in England; and if
I have to take boys from this, I hope they will be of your
family." He said, "You speak like a father to us, and we very
much approve. Here is a pot of pombe; I did not give you one

11th.--To-day, the king having graciously granted permission, we
went out shooting, but saw only a few buffalo tracks.

12th.--The Kamraviona was sent to inquire after our health, and
to ascertain from me all I knew respecting the origin of
Kamrasi's tribe, the distribution of countries, and the seat of
the government. I sent the king a diagram, painted in various
colours, with full explanations of everything, and asked
permission to send two more of my men in search of Bombay, who
had now been absent twenty days. The reply was, that if Bombay
did not return within four days, Kamrasi would send other men
after him on the fifth day; and, in the meantime, he sent one pot
of pombe as a token of his kind regard.

13th.--The Kamraviona was sent to inquire after our health, to
ask for medicine for himself, and to inquire more into the origin
of his race. I, on the other hand, wishing to make myself as
disagreeable as possible, in order that Kamrasi might get tired
of us, sent Frij to ask for fresh butter, eggs, tobacco, coffee,
and fowls, every day, saying, I will pay their price when I reach
Gani, for we were suffering from want of proper food. Kamrasi
was surprised at this clamour for food, and inquired what we ate
at home that we were so different from everybody else.

We heard to-day a strange story, involving the tragic fate of
Budja. On coming here, he had been bewitched by Kamrasi's
frontier officer, who put the charm into a pot of pombe. From
the moment Budja drank it he was seized with sickness, and
remained so until he reached the first station in Uganda, when he
died. The facts of the bewitchment had been found out by means
of the perpetrator's wives, who, from the moment the pombe was
drunk, took to precipitate flight, well knowing what effects
would follow, and dreading the chastisement Mtesa would bring
upon their household. We heard, too, that the deserters had
returned to the place they deserted from, with thirty Waganda,
and a present of some cows for me.

14th.---Kamrasi sent me four parcels of coffee, very neatly
enclosed in rush pith.

15th.--Getting more impatient, and desirous to move on at any
sacrifice, I proposed giving up all claims to my muskets, as well
as the present of cows from Mtesa, if Kamrasi would give us boats
to Gani at once; but the reply was simply, Why be in such a

16th.--The Kamraviona was sent to us with a load of coffee, which
Kamrasi had purchased with cowries, and to inquire how we had
slept. Very badly, was the reply, because we knew Bombay would
have been back long ago if Kamrasi was not concealing him
somewhere, and we did not know what he was doing with deserters
and Waganda. Kamrasi then wanted us to paint his mbugu cloths in
different patterns and colours; but we sent him instead six
packages of red-ink powder, and got abused for sauciness. He
then wanted black ink, else how could he put on the red with
taste; but we had none to give him. Next, he asked leave for my
men to shoot cows, before his Kidi visitors, which they did to
his satisfaction, instructing him at the same time to fire powder
with his own rifle; when, triumphant with his success, he
protested he would never use anything but guns again, and threw
away his spear as useless. Bombay, we learned, had reached Gani,
and ought to return in eight days.

17th and 18th.--A large party of Chopi people arrived, by
Kamrasi's orders, to tell the reason which induced them to apply
for guns to the white men at Gani, as it appeared evident they
must have wished to fight their king. The Kidi visitors got
broken heads for helping themselves from the Wanyoro's fields,
and when they cried out against such treatment, were told they
should rob the king, if they wished to rob at all.

19th.--Nothing was done because Kamrasi was dismissing his Kidi
guests, 200, with presents of cows and women.

20th.--Having asked Kamrasi to return my pictures, he sent the
book of birds, but not of animals; and said he could not see us
until a new hut was built, because the old one was flooded by the
Kafu, which had been rising several days. We must not, he said,
talk about Bombay any more, because everybody said he was
detained by the N'yanswenge (Petherick's party), and would return
here with the new moon. I would not accept the lie, saying, How
can my "children" at Gani detain my messengers, when they have
received strict orders from me by letter to send an answer
quickly? It was all Kamrasi's doing, for he had either hidden
Bombay, or ordered his officers to take him slowly, as he did us,
stopping four days at each stage.

Frij again told me he was present when Said Said, the Sultan of
Zanzibar, sent an army to assist the Wagunya at Amu, on the
coast, against the incursions of the Masai. These Amu people
have the same Wahuma features as Kamrasi, whom they also resemble
both in general physical appearance, and in many of them having
circular marks, as if made by cautery, on the forehead and
temples. These marks I took not to be tatooing or decorative,
but as a cure for disease--cautery being a favourite remedy with
both races.

The battle lasted only two days, though the Masai brought a
thousand spears against the Arabs' cannon. But this was not the
only battle Said Said had to fight on those grounds; for some
years previously he had to subdue the Waziwa, who live on very
marshy land, into respect for his sovereignty, when the battle
lasted years, in consequence of the bad nature of the ground, and
the trick the Waziwa had of staking the ground with spikes. The
Wasuahili, or coast-people, by his description, are the bastards
or mixed breeds who live on the east coast of Africa, extending
from the Somali country to Zanzibar. Their language is Kisuahili;
but there is no land Usuahili, though people talk of going to the
Suahili in the same vague sense as they do of going to the
Mashenzi, or amongst the savages. The common story amongst the
Wasuahili at Zanzibar, in regard to the government of that
island, was, that the Wakhadim, or aborigines of Zanzibar, did
not like the oppressions of the Portuguese, and therefore allied
themselves to the Arabs of Muscat--even compromising their
natural birthright of freedom in government, provided the Arabs,
by their superior power, would secure to them perpetual equity,
peace and justice. The senior chief, Sheikh Muhadim, was the
mediator on their side, and without his sanction no radial
changes compromising the welfare of the land could take place;
the system of arbitration being, that the governing Arab on the
one side, and the deputy of the Wakhadim on the other, should
hold conference with a screen placed between them, to obviate all
attempts at favour, corruption, or bribery.

The former report of the approach of my men, with as many Waganda
and cows for me, turned out partly false, inasmuch as only one of
my men was with 102 Waganda, whilst the whole of the deserters
were left behind in Uganda with cows; and Kamrasi hearing this,
ordered all to go back again until the whole of my men should

21st.--I was told how a Myoro woman, who bore twins that died,
now keeps two small pots in her house, as effigies of the
children, into which she milks herself every evening, and will
continue to do so five months, fulfilling the time appointed by
nature for suckling children, lest the spirits of the dead should
persecute her. The twins were not buried, as ordinary people are
buried, under ground, but placed in an earthenware pot, such as
the Wanyoro use for holding pombe. They were taken to the jungle
and placed by a tree, with the pot turned mouth downwards.
Manua, one of my men, who is a twin, said, in Nguru, one of the
sister provinces to Unyanyembe, twins are ordered to be killed
and thrown into water the moment they are born, lest droughts and
famines or floods should oppress the land. Should any one
attempt to conceal twins, the whole family would be murdered by
the chief; but, though a great traveller, this is the only
instance of such brutality Manua had ever witnessed in any

In the province of Unyanyembe, if a twin or twins die, they are
thrown into water for the same reason as in Nguru; but as their
numbers increase the size of the family, their birth is hailed
with delight. Still there is a source of fear there in
connection with twins, as I have seen myself; for when one dies,
the mother ties a little gourd to her neck as a proxy, and puts
into it a trifle of everything which she gives the living child,
lest the jealousy of the dead spirit should torment her.
Further, on the death of the child, she smears herself with
butter and ashes, and runs frantically about, tearing her hair
and bewailing piteously; whilst the men of the place use towards
her the foulest language, apparently as if in abuse of her
person, but in reality to frighten away the demons who have
robbed her nest.

22d.--I sent Frij to Kamrasi to find out what he was doing with
the Waganda and my deserters, as I wished to speak with their two
head representatives. I also wanted some men to seek for and to
fetch Bombay, as I said I believed him to be tied by the leg
behind one of the visible hills in Kidi. The reply was, 102
Waganda, with one of my men only, had been stationed at the
village my men deserted from since the date (13th) we heard of
them last. They had no cows for me, but each of the Waganda bore
a log of firewood, which Mtesa had ordered them to carry until
they either returned with me or brought back a box of gunpowder,
in default of which they were to be all burnt in a heap with the
logs they carried. Kamrasi, still acting on his passive policy,
would not admit them here, but wished them to return with a
message, to the effect that Mtesa had no right to hold me as his
guest now I had once gone into another's hands. We were all
three kings to do with our subjects as we liked, and for this
reason the deserters ought to be sent on here; but if I wished to
speak to the Waganda, he would call their officer. There was no
fear, he said, about Bombay; he was on his way; but the men who
were escorting him were spinning out the time, stopping at every
place, and feasting every day. To-morrow, he added, some more
Gani people would arrive here, when we should know more about it.
I still advised Kamrasi to give the road to Mtesa provided he
gave up plundering the Wanyoro of women and cattle; but if my
counsel was listened to, I could get no acknowledgment that it
was so.

23d and 24th.--I sent to inquire what news there was of Bombay's
coming, and what measures Kamrasi had taken to call the Waganda's
chief officer and my deserters here; as also to beg he would send
us specimens of all the various tribes that visit him, in order
that me might draw them. He sent four loads of dried fish, with
a request for my book of birds again, as it contains a portrait
of king Mtesa, and proposed seeing us at the newly-constructed
Kafu palace to-morrow, when all requests would be attended to.
In the meanwhile, we were told that Bombay had been seen on his
way returning from Gani; and the Waganda had all run away
frightened, because they were told the Kidi and Chopi visitors,
who had been calling on Kamrasi lately, were merely the nucleus
of an army forming to drive them away, and to subdue Uganda.
Mtesa was undergoing the coronation formalities, and for this
reason had sent the deserters to Kari's hill, giving them cows
and a garden to live on, as no visitors can remain near the court
while the solemnities of the coronation were going on. The
thirty-odd brothers will be burnt to death, saving two or three,
of which one will be sent into this country--as was the case with
one of the late king Sunna's brothers, who is still in Unyoro--
and the others will remain in the court with Mtesa as playfellows
until the king dies, when, like Sunna's two brothers still living
in Uganda, one at N'yama Goma and one at Ngambezi, they will be
pensioned off. After the coronation is concluded, it is expected
Mtesa will go into Kittari, on the west of Uganda, to fight
first, and then, turning east, will fight with the Wasoga; but we
think if he fights anywhere, it will be with Kamrasi.

25th and 26th.--I sent Frij to the palace to inquire after
Bombay, and got the usual reply: "Why is Bana in such a hurry?
He is always for doing things quickly. Tell my 'brother' to keep
his mind at rest; Bombay is now on the boundary of Gani coming
here, and will in due course arrive." Both Rumanika's men and
those belonging to Dr K'yengo asked Kamrasi's leave to return to
their homes, but were refused, because the road was unsafe. "Had
they not," it was said, "heard of Budja's telling Mtesa that
K'yengo's children prevented the white men from returning to
Uganda? and since then Mtesa had killed his frontier officer for
being chicken-hearted, afraid to carry out his orders, and had
appointed another in his stead, giving him strict orders to make
prisoners of all foreigners who might pass that way; and,
further, when some twenty Wanyoro were going to Karague, they
were hunted down by Mtesa's orders, and three of their number
killed; for he was determined to cut off all intercourse between
this country and Karague. They must therefore wait till the road
is safe."

Hearing this, Dr K'yengo's men, who happened to be as well off
here as anywhere, accepted the advice; but Rumanika's men said,
"We are starving; we have been here too long already doing
nothing, and must go, let what will happen to us." Kamrasi said,
"What will be the use of your going empty-handed? I cannot send
cows and slaves to Rumanika when the road is so unsafe; you must
wait a bit." But they still urged as before, and so forced the
king reluctantly to acquiesce, but only on the condition that two
of their head men should remain behind until some more of
Rumanika's men came to fetch them away--in fact, as we had been
accredited to him by Rumanika, he wanted to keep some of that
king's people as a security until we were out of his hands.

27th.--I sent Frij to the palace to ask once more for leave to
visit the Luta Nzige river-lake to the westward, and to request
Kamrasi would send men to fetch my property from Karague. He
sent four loads of small fish and one pot of pombe, to say he
would see me on the morrow, when every arrangement would be made.
Late at night orders came announcing that I might write my
despatches, as sixty men were ready to start for Karague.

28th.--I sent one of my men with despatches to Kamrasi, who
detained him half the day, and then ordered him to call to-
morrow. This being the fifteenth or twentieth time Kamrasi had
disappointed me, after promising an interview, that we might have
a proper understanding about everything, and when no begging on
his party was to interrupt our conversation, I sent him a
threatening message, to see what effect that would have. The
purport of it was, that I was afraid to send men to Karague, now
I had seen his disposition to make prisoners of all who visit
him. Here had I been kept six weeks waiting for Bombay's return
from Gani, where I only permitted him to go because I was told
the journey to and fro would only occupy from eight to ten days
at most. Then Rumanika's men, who came here with Baraka, though
daily crying to get away, were still imprisoned here, without any
hope before them. If I sent Msalima, he would be kept ten years
on the road. If I went to the lake Luta Nzige, God only knows
when he would let me come back; and now, for once and for all, I
wished to sacrifice my property, and leave the countries of black
kings; for what Kamrasi had done, Mtesa had done likewise,
detaining the two men I detached on a friendly mission, which
made me fear to send any more and inquire after my guns, lest he
should seize them likewise. I would stay no longer among such


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